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9 Things - May 4th 2019

-There are too many female athletes suffering ACL tears this sports season. I can think of 7 instances off the top of my head including 3 of my athletes, 1 of them had just finished rehabbing an ACL tear on her opposite leg.

 -Why does this happen? Knee Valgus. Females have wider hips than men, thank god or evolution or whoever you credit with creation for that, and that tends to throw off the line of support. Ideally, the hips would align over the knees, which would align over the ankles. It would look like a straight line running from the ankles to the hips. When the hips are a little wider, there is more of an angle between the hips and the knees and this puts more of a strain on the knees. Knee valgus, characterized by hip abduction and hip internal rotation, is the “caving in” action of the knee while the hips are flexed. Think of squatting, running and changing direction. An athlete is running down the field, plants her foot to cut and instead of the hips, knees and ankles lining up, the knee rolls inside that base of support and all it takes is a harsh cutting angle to blow the ACL out.

 I strained my ACL in college playing hockey. I was skating, turned my hips into a stop and my left skate caught a divot in the ice forcing a complete stop while my momentum continued to carry me left. My knee buckled and it felt like a bunch of rubber bands yanking in my knee. I was a dumb-dumb back then and instead of having it looked at, I continued to play with a brace until I blew it out completely a few months later.  

 -The feet play a role as well. I have no real evidence to support this, but this is my blog and I don’t mind kicking some theory your way. Just know you will not find this in a textbook. Healthy feet are supposed to have an arch. When feet flatten, the arch disappears and it can cause that same knee valgus mentioned above.

 -We spend much of our time in soft, comfortable shoes and it basically puts our feet to sleep. Think of how difficult like would be if we weren’t able to use our hands to manipulate cars, operate machinery, cook, clean, read, type, send angry texts, tweet or slap someone in the back of the head. When your feet go to sleep, their ability to store and transmit force up into the legs and hips. The feet need to be alert and the ankles need to be strong and mobile. I am by no means an expert here and I will continue to learn about these underappreciated athletic boosters.

 -Movement patterns and mechanics are important. There are optimal speed and movement mechanics that will help athletes move faster on the field AND keep athletes healthy. If you struggle with hip, ankle, knee or shoulder pain during your sports season, I would bet my mortgage that a good amount of that could be attributed to sub par movement abilities. Next offseason, get with a personal trainer who understands movement mechanics. I swear it will be a good investment.

 -You have to be confident to be agile. The best athletes I have worked with do not over think things on the field. When we perform 1 on 1 or 2 on 1 drills, they perceive an opening and they attack. I have other athletes who sense the same openings and they kind of hesitate, or they attack half-heartedly. I see the same things on the field.  All the movement skills in the world will not move the needle all that much if you do not have that killer mentality behind it. Fix Your Brain!

 -Fitness professionals on social media are such douchebags. Go on twitter right now and it will be easy to find 2 “fit pro bros” calling each other out and bashing each other’s programming or nutrition advice. Follow a thread on athlete training and you will see at least 2 comments ripping either the execution of the exercise or the exercises inclusion in the program. It does nothing to help this industry and it makes us all look bad. Besides, if you have time to engage in a heated twitter fight, you obviously aren’t that successful. Pipe down, keyboard warrior; the adults are trying to raise the bar in this industry.

 -Carbs are good for you. Fat is good for you. Protein is good for you. If you are struggling to find an eating plan that makes sense for you and your goals, remember this. People have had tremendous results on high carb/low fat diets and people have seen tremendous results on high fat/low carb diets. You will always be better off following a plan that doesn’t make you miserable!

 -CELERITAS is speed in Latin. I don’t know why but I love this.

 

 

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